Title: The Fault In Our Stars
Author: John Green
Publication: January 10th, 2012 by Dutton Juvenile
Received: Bought at Superstore
Rating: 5 out of 5
Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 12, Hazel was prepared to die until, at 14, a medical miracle shrunk the tumours in her lungs… for now.
Why is it that books I bought at a grocery store always have the lowest expectations and come out with the highest satisfaction? (You’re right, I need to buy ALL my books at the grocery store from now on.)
This isn’t cancer. This is a book about cancer, well no, it’s not even that. It’s a book about people who are dying of cancer, but then, as the cancer IS them and it’s just their own cells poisoning them it’s really just a book about people dying.
Ceci n’est pas une pipe (From a shirt Hazel wore when meeting Peter Van Houten)
It’s easy to see this story is made up. It’s basically just a bunch of meet cutes, sometimes funny situations (like Patrick the nutless cancer survivor, I kid you not, nutless people.) and some heart felt moments, but then it was just a lot of John Green’s own philosophies and thoughts on the universe. He said at the beginning of the book to look at it like it’s fiction, okay it’s fiction. But more so, it’s a lot of thoughts Mr. Green can’t cop to actually having himself and therefore he has to create characters to have these thoughts. And for some reason the characters had to have cancer and true love and a blind cancer survivor that gets dumped by a girl and a really horrible author of a book that doesn’t have an ending tied into the story.
It’s fine Mr. Green, I applaud your craftiness, even though in the end it was you, in the study with the pen that is guilty for everything written in this book. (How many references to Clue do you get nowadays I wonder?)
Supporting my theory are some thoughts the book presents, some of which are repeated and some of which are only thought once by Hazel, but never removes impact.
“The world is not a wish-granting factory”
“I thought of my dad telling me that the universe wants to be noticed. But what we want is to be noticed by the universe, to give a shit what happens to us – not the collective idea of sentient life but each of us as individuals.”
“You don’t get to choose if you get hurt in this world, old man, but you do have some say in who hurts you. I like my choices, I hope she likes hers.”
I didn’t cry, because it’s not that sort of crying book. Sure you can overlook all the philosophy and get tangled in the romance and then get blown up by the grenades both Augustus and Hazel are, but you’d be missing the point. This is pretty much a fictional story about life, how to live it, how to see it, how to suffer it. And if you’re currently have some trouble suffering life, then pick up this book, it won’t disappoint.
Well, except for Peter Van Houten, if you were really reading this book secretly hoping to know the ending of An Imperial Affliction you’ll be sorely disappointed as Mr. Van Houten only tells us what happened to Sisyphus the Hamster.